I am in space …
Yes, you are right! I am in space. All of us, because we all are part of the universe. But, I have also something else – my name has flown to space, to asteroids and planets, on board of some robotic missions. Take a look on some of them below.
Current position: Orbiting Mars
Launch: November 18, 2013, 18:28 UTC
Orbital insertion: September 22, 2014, 02:24 UTC
Mission: Mars atmospheric research
COSPAR ID: 2013-063A
Reference system: Areocentric (Mars)
Periareion: 150 km (93 mi)
Apoareion: 6,200 km (3,900 mi)
Inclination: 75 degrees
Period: 4.5 hours
Current position: Earth, scheduled for launch after postponed launch date on March 4, 2016
Launch: May 5, 2018
Landing: expected on 26 November 2018
Landing location: Elisium Planitia 4.5°N 135.0°E, Mars
Mission: Study the interior and subsurface of Mars
COSPAR ID: not assigned yet
Other description of the mission:
Mission includes also two small cubesats called MarCO. “The Mars Cube One” (MarCO) spacecraft, a set of two 6U CubeSats, will piggyback with the InSight mission to help relay communications during the probe’s entry, descent and landing phase. MarCO is a technology capability demonstration of communications relay system.
Target: asteroid 101955 Bennu
Current position: in space on trajectory to asteroid 101955 Bennu (location live here)
Launch: September 8, 2016, 23:05 UTC
Landing: expected on 26 November 2018
Landing location after sample return mission: Utah Test and Training Range, Earth
Planned landing after return: 24 September 2023, 15:00 UTC
COSPAR ID: 2016-055A
The OSIRIS-REx (Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security, Regolith Explorer) is a NASA asteroid study and sample-return mission. Its mission is to study asteroid 101955 Bennu, a carbonaceous asteroid, and return a sample to Earth on 24 September 2023 for detailed analysis. The material returned is expected to enable scientists to learn more about the formation and evolution of the Solar System, its initial stages of planet formation, and the source of organic compounds that led to the formation of life on Earth.
After traveling for approximately two years, the spacecraft is to rendezvous with asteroid 101955 Bennu in August 2018 and begin 505 days of surface mapping at a distance of approximately 5 km (3.1 mi). Following collection of material (from 60 grams to two kilograms) in July 2020, the sample will be returned to Earth in a 46-kilogram (101 lb) capsule. The return trip to Earth will be shorter, and will land in September 2023.
|Mission: Hayabusa 2
Target: asteroid 162173 Ryugu
Current position: in space on trajectory to asteroid 162173 Ryugu
Launch: December 3, 2014, 04:22 UTC
Arrival to asteroid: July 2018
Landing back on Earth: expected in December 2020
COSPAR ID: 2014-076A
(162173) Ryugu orbiter:
Orbital insertion June 2018 (planned)
Orbital departure December 2019 (planned)
The target of the mission is to study the asteroid 162173 Ryugu (formerly designated 1999 JU3). Hayabusa2 is expected to arrive at the target in July 2018, survey the asteroid for a year and a half, depart in December 2019, and return to Earth in December 2020.
The spacecraft features ion engines, upgraded guidance and navigation technology, antennas and attitude control systems. Operations at the asteroid will be similar to those of the previous Hayabusa mission, but with an explosive device to dig the asteroid surface for fresh sample material.
Current position: prepared to launch
Operator: The Planetary Society
Launch: April 30, 2018 (planned)
COSPAR ID: N/A
LightSail 2 is a project to demonstrate controlled solar sailing using a CubeSat developed by The Planetary Society, a global non-profit organization devoted to space exploration. The spacecraft core measures 10 × 10 × 30 cm, and its kite-shaped solar sail deploys into a total area of 32 square meters (340 sq ft).
LightSail2 is currently scheduled to be launched as a secondary payload on the Space Test Program (STP-2) on a Falcon Heavy rocket in early 2018.